The Game: The Charlotte Stone Crabs went toe to toe against the division leading Bradenton Marauders and walked away with an 11-6 win on Saturday night at McKechnie Field. The Stone Crabs gave up a 4-0 lead early only to produce a five run eighth to secure the win.
The Stone Crabs jumped out to an early lead in the third inning. Isaias Velasquez drew a walk and Tim Beckham reached on error to put runners on base. Henry Wrigley then drove home both runs with a double to left that gave the Stone Crabs a 2-0 lead.
The Stone Crabs added to their lead in the fourth inning. Michael Sheridan doubled to left to get things started. Reid Fronk then struck a two run homer to right that increased the lead to 4-0.
Bradenton posted their first run of the game in the fourth inning. Calvin Anderson singled to left with two outs to put a runner on the bases. Anderson would later score on a ground ball by Austin McClune to give them their first run.
Bradenton capitalized on Stone Crabs defensive miscues in the fifth to take the lead. Robbie Grossman singled to center followed by a single by Starling Marte. Jeremy Farrell drove home Grossman with a double to left. Marte would then score on a wild pitch. Quincy Latimore followed with a double to left to score Farrell. Latimore would later score on a double by Eric Fryer. Fryer made his way around the bases to score on back to back wild pitches to give the Marauders a 6-4 lead.
The Stone Crabs battled back to tie the game in the sixth inning. Matt Sweeney led off the inning with a walk. Matt Spring would follow with a two run homer to tie the game 6-6.
The Stone Crabs then took the lead for good in the eighth inning, striking for a five run inning of their own. Matt Sweeney singled to left to lead off. Michael Sheridan then drew an intentional walk to put another runner on the bases. Stephen Vogt then drove home the go ahead run with a pinch hit single to score Sweeney. Anthony Scelfo entered the game to pinch run for Vogt. Reid Fronk then reached on an error to score Sheridan and move Scelfo to third. Omar Luna laid down a perfect bunt to score Scelfo. Both runners would advance into scoring position on a wild pitch. Then Isaias Velasquez drove home two runs with a single to center, giving the Stone Crabs an 11-6 win.
Nick Barnese pitched 4 1/3 innings and allowed 5 runs on 9 hits with 4 strikeouts. Marquis Fleming earned the victory, surrendering his first earned run of the season on 2 hits with 4 strikeouts and a walk. Zach Quate pitched 2 shut-out innings to end the game, allowing 1 hits with 4 strikeouts and a walk.
Stone Crabs Player of the Game: Michael Sheridan; 3 for 4 with a double, run scored and a walk.
RP Top Prospect Watch:
Nick Barnese: 5 runs (4 earned) on 9 hits with 4 strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings.
Tim Beckham: 1 for 4 with a run scored and 2 strikeouts.
Matt Sweeney: 1 for 4 with a run scored, walk and a strikeout.
A Look Ahead: The Stone Crabs (12-9) and Marauders (14-8) conclude the series on Sunday afternoon at McKechnie Field. Joseph Cruz (0-1, 3.60) will be starting for Charlotte against Aaron Pribanic (0-1, 6.35).